October 11th, 2004


Poverty in prayer

The act of prayer teaches us our unworthiness, which is a very salutary lesson for such proud beings as we are. If God gave us favours without constraining us to pray for them we should never know how poor we are, but a true prayer is an inventory of wants, a catalogue of necessities, a revelation of hidden poverty. While it is an application to divine wealth, it is a confession of human emptiness.

Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Morning and Evening (11 October, Morning: "The Necessity of Prayer")

I'm poor with prayer, rather than being one who prays because he knows he's poor. By and large, I just don't. Thankfully I'm in an environment where I pray with others a few times a week, but alone, I'm distracted within seconds on those rare occassions when I choose to pray at all. I wish I were overstating things. God's not letting go of me on the prayer thing, but He's not miraculously making me better with it, either.

That's not true. Everything He's doing to bring me to Him is miraculous; the fact that I'd ever pray at all is His work. Rather, He's not instantaneously making me better in prayer, and that only serves to highlight my weakness more. Which I hate. But it's part of the point.

On another note, I'm so ready for the elections to be over. Unless platforms change, no one has anything new to tell me that would change my vote, which places me in a position to not care overmuch about John Kerry or George Bush. Lots of people do, though, and I expect they'll be talking more and more until November. Freedom of expression is good (even when it's overused), so maybe I just need to invest in headphones.

Since it's Columbus Day, go out and claim someone else's yard for Spain and rename anyone you find there.

The most healthy state of a Christian is to be always empty in self and constantly depending upon the Lord for supplies; to be always poor in self and rich in Jesus; weak as water personally, but mighty through God to do great exploits; and hence the use of prayer, because, while it adores God, it lays the creature where it should be, in the very dust. Prayer is in itself, apart from the answer which it brings, a great benefit to the Christian.

Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Morning and Evening (11 October, Morning: "The Necessity of Prayer")
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